Be the change you want to see in the world

Mahatma Gandhi said “Be the change you want to see in the world.” A wonderful and noble thought.

Reading this from Roberta X reminded me of a thought I had a few weeks ago.

Driving around town with Family, Wife noticed a car with a bumper sticker that had the Gandhi quote on it. I do think it’s a beautiful thought, but I started to wonder how many people actually do that.

For instance, I wish to see people being more responsible for themselves, so I work to be more responsible for myself. I work to teach my children and other children in my care (e.g. my work as a Cub Scout Den Leader) about being responsible for themselves. I want to see people that work hard to be rewarded for their efforts, so I work hard, climb the ladder, save my money, and teach my children the same. I don’t want to see people go hungry, so I use my hard-earned money to buy food for my church’s food pantry.

Then I see people that want to spread the wealth. But then I ask them to spread some of their wealth directly to me, and they never seem to pull out their wallets. If the change (and hope) you wish to see in the world is to spread the wealth, then shouldn’t you be that change and start by spreading your wealth?

I see people that want others to pay for their health care or their groceries or their gas or whatever. But again they never seem to want to pay for mine when I ask them to.

I see people demanding mandated volunteer service (ignore the fact that makes no sense, or that it’s akin to slave labor), but I never see those same people volunteering.

Oh I see. You want *ME* to do that, but the gander just wants to sit back and reap the benefits. I see. Sow nothing, reap something. I see. Don’t consider the sustainability of that course of action, since you just want your big screen TV now. I guess someone didn’t have The Little Red Hen read to them as a child. Maybe that’s why some of us get a wee upset at such propositions of hope and change.

If you want to see change in the world, it starts with you. You need to change yourself and be that change. If you can’t be that change, maybe it’s not such a great change. If you can be that change, I can at least say I’ll have more respect for you.